Local resale shop lends a hand

REED CITY — At the INC Spot in Reed City shoppers can find a prom dress for $12 or a snowman figurine for 50 cents.

In a time of need they can also find a helping hand.

Whether an individual recently lost a loved one and is left with many items to be sifted through in a short period of time or someone is moving and needs to get rid of unwanted items, INC Spot volunteers will travel to the site and help.

INC Spot manager Brenda Bowman said the first time she received a call to help a family who needed to get rid of unwanted items quickly, she did not hesitate to say yes.

Bowman gathered a crew of five volunteers who went to the home and loaded up the items to bring back to the store.

Since then the INC Spot has received 10 calls from people with houses in Mecosta, Osceola and Wexford Counties needing similar help. Donations to the store are typically brought to the store by the previous owner, but Bowman said if the store has the resources they will make house calls.

“There is a real need for help getting (items) out of a house.” said INC Spot manager Brenda Bowman. “We provide this service to help people who can’t do it themselves,”

After their father passed away, Patty Martin and her sister listed his house in Cadillac with a real estate agent.

“We put the house up for sale assuming it would take a long time to sell, but we had a purchase agreement within two weeks,” Martin said.

Living in the Grand Rapids area, the sisters were unable to go through all the belongings in her father’s house in the time frame they were given. Martin called Love INC and a group of volunteers came to her father’s house within the week.

“We were going through an emotional time and they came in and were so gracious,” Martin said.

In three days the crew cleaned out the entire house. The items in the house had been collected over the past 60 years.

Anything the volunteers found that looked like it may be of value to the family, they put in a pile for the sisters to look through, Martin said.

“They helped us so much,” Martin said. “Not just with the actual work they did, but on an emotional level as well.”

INC Spot volunteer Chris Willard said the volunteers do everything they can to remain sensitive to family needs while sorting through donated items.

“We’re very cautious of what people in the family might want,” Willard said.

Bowman said though the service is to help those in need, the store benefits as well. Though not all items the volunteers clear out are donated to the store, some of the shop’s nicest donations have been found on the excursions. She said the more the store can help people, the more successful they are.

“(This store) is a great place for my kids to learn it’s better to give than to receive,” Willard said.

Anyone in need of the INC Spot service can call the store at (231) 832-9495.